News from Nkurru and Madikwe
This update is long overdue…..so here we go. It is going very well in Madikwe with a lot of positive changes in the park. One of the higlights that are busy happening is the active sickle bush clearing that started on Thlou plains. It is done with a big bush clearing machine. It is very effective and selective. The outcome will be so amazing. They are planning to do major blocks in the reserve and the roads. Many of the projects are possible due to the contributions by the guests staying at the lodges through the conservation fund.
The wild dogs from Hluhluwe are settling in very well and giving us great sightings. The introduction of the new pack with the existing dogs in Madikwe were a big success. The Bates pack consists of 8 dogs and the Kalkfontein pack x 4 dogs.
Sadly the 2 cheetah coalitions had a run in a while back and one of the males sadly did not make it. The lone male got sent away to better his chances of surviving. A new female got introduced in his place and she is doing very well. We have 2 males and 2 female cheetahs in Madikwe.
On the big cat front 2 new male lions got introduced from Addo. We have not seen them much but news is they have tried to kill buffalo all ready so they are settling in nicely. Munye the leopard has been out and about with great sightings the last few weeks. He has been seen around vleischfontein, Tau dam , inkwe pan and mostly all around the South west of the park. Tsala the leopardess of the south must have passed away as she was very old. The last time we saw her was when the vet worked on her a few months ago. She did provide us with some amazing sightings and experiences.
Tsala looking up at crows
As for the elephants ….everybody knows they are doing VERY well.
We are now in the dry season and sightings around waterholes are completely of the charts. We are spending quite a bit of time around waterholes like Thlou dam at sunsets. If photography is one of your hobbies that is one place you want to be believe me, the light, dust and silhouettes are just amazing and makes for some beautiful creative photography. Yes it is extremely dry and we still urge people to use water wisely.
We have been very busy at the lodge as well getting stuck into quite a few projects. The most important one that got completed a few weeks ago was the drilling of a borehole as our back up borehole dried up. They drilled a new hole not far from our main borehole in the valley north of the camp. They stopped drilling at 85 meters, yes they did find very good and strong water. We are busy sourcing pumps as I am typing this. The plan is to use the same solar panels as a power source for the new borehole. You will notice the new water hydrants at all the rooms. This is part of our firefighting plan at Nkurru. Our maintenance weeks are coming up in August and will start with the closing up of the toilets of Room 2 and 5 during those weeks. The Lilliput system got revamped completely to help us to be more water efficient at the lodge so all our waste water gets recycled. The water then gets pumped into the new reedbed for further filtration before it gravity feeds to the waterhole. The waterhole at the lodge has also been extremely busy so the couch safari on the deck are very popular this time of the year.
That is the news from Nkurru for now.
Looking forward in seeing you guys at the lodge
The Nkurru Team.